boerenzakdoek Haiti
blue . red . coat of arms
60 x 60 cm
oil on canvas
©arttrust 2009


since 1987

The flag of Haiti was adopted on February 25, 1987. The flag is divided into two horizontal rectangles. The top half is blue and the bottom is red. Since 1843 the flag for official and state use has had the coat of arms of Haiti on a white panel in the center. The coat of arms depicts a trophy of weapons ready to defend freedom, and a royal palm for independence. The palm is topped by the Cap of Liberty. The national motto is on a white scroll reading L'Union Fait La Force ("Unity Makes Strength"). The civil flag and ensign lacks the emblem. The blue and red of the flag were retained after a French Tricolore was torn up by the revolutionary Jean-Jacques Dessalines in 1803. The two parts were stitched together horizontally to make a new flag. Historically, students in Haiti learn that on May 18th, 1803, in a congress held at Arcahaie, a township located about fifty miles north of Port-au-Prince, Dessalines created the country’s first flag. Ripping apart a French one - blue, white and red, he threw away the white portion that was in the center and asked Catherine Flon, a young girl of the area, to sew the remaining ones. Having stitched together those two pieces of cloth, he mounted them horizontally on a staff as Haiti’s new national symbol. The blue set on the upper part of the flag represented the population of ancient slaves, four hundred and fifty thousand of them, an overwhelming majority indeed who, according to the first constitution, were supposed to be the only social group to personify the country. At the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin, it was found that Haiti and Liechtenstein were using the same flag, which led to a crown being added to the flag of Liechtenstein.

source: wikipedia